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Holy Motors (2012)

Not Rated | | Drama, Fantasy | 4 July 2012 (France)
2:32 | Trailer

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From dawn to dusk, a few hours in the shadowy life of a mystic man named Monsieur Oscar.



4,092 ( 1,574)
28 wins & 68 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Mr. Oscar / Le Banquier / La Mendiante / L'O.S de la Motion Capture / M. Merde / Le Père / L'Accordéoniste / Le Tueur / Le Tué / Le Mourant / L'Homme au Foyer
Céline (as Édith Scob)
Kay M
Eva Grace (Jean)
Elise Lhomeau ...
Léa (Élise)
Jeanne Disson ...
L'Homme à la tache de vin
Le Dormeur / Voix Limousine (as LC)
Nastya Golubeva Carax ...
La Petite Fille
Reda Oumouzoune ...
L'Acrobate Mocap
Zlata ...
La Cyber-Femme
Geoffrey Carey ...
Le Photographe / Voix Limousine
L'assistante photographe
Elise Caron
Corinne Yam


We see a few seconds of a black and white, silent art film. There is a dark movie theater filled with people watching this film. The camera mostly remains on the audience. Cut to a man sleeping on twin bed with a sleeping dog next to another empty twin bed with the same sheets. He gets up and looks out the window and we see he is next to an airport. One of the walls is covered in wallpaper with skinny bare trees. He puts his ear to the wall. There is a hole in the wall and he looks through it but we don't know if he can see anything. He has a metal instrument on the middle finger of his right hand. He sticks the instrument into the hole in the wall. His hand shakes a little and he turns the instrument. This allows him to open a door in the wall. The dog joins him as he steps through the door. There is a set of double doors and he steps through them. It seems as though he has stepped through the fire exit on the balcony of a movie theater, presumably the theatre that the film opened in...

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Drama | Fantasy


Not Rated | See all certifications »

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Release Date:

4 July 2012 (France)  »

Also Known As:

Sveti motori  »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?


Leos Carax wrote the part of the supermodel with Kate Moss in mind, as they had already been willing to work together in another project that finally was not made. By the time of filming, though, Moss was about to get married and declined the part that, ultimately, went to Eva Mendes. See more »


Eva Grace: Is that your hair?
Mr. Oscar: No, not yet. They made me older. Are those your eyes?
Eva Grace: No. They're Eva's eyes.
See more »

Crazy Credits

"Katya, for you" with a picture of Yekaterina Golubeva during the closing credits. See more »


References Eyes Without a Face (1960) See more »


Can't Get You Out of My Head
Performed by Kylie Minogue
Written by Cathy Dennis and Rob Davis
See more »

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User Reviews

Meaningless ideas presented incoherently in an "artful" film
17 February 2013 | by (Ontario, Canada) – See all my reviews

"Holy Motors" begins with Monsieur Oscar (Denis Levant), a middle-aged Parisian man, in the back of a functionally tricked-out limousine. His assistant/driver hands him a folder, the first of today's jobs, and he begins to transform himself into an old woman. Out on the street, Oscar passes himself off as a poor, begging, old woman, conning the passers- by. But is it really a con if he doesn't get any money?

That is just one of many questions that can go through one's head as you attempt to follow this film. And just one of the many unanswered questions that becomes increasingly frustrating the further you get through this film. "Holy Motors" has been described as a day in the life of a con-man. Too bad he's not a con-man. The second and third segments, involving Oscar in a luminescent, body movement/sexual performance and then infiltrating a model's photo-shoot as a crazy man, make it clear that Oscar is in fact a street performer/actor/hit-man. But apparently only those who like and "get" this film will see how he's an actor. That's the type of pretentiousness this film promotes.

Each segment is unrelated, connected only by Oscar transforming himself for his next job in the back of his limousine; which makes the majority of the film completely pointless. At one point, we are supposed to care for Oscar (who knows when that connection occurred) because one segment features Oscar with a similar street performer/actor, presumably a former love interest. In this segment they sing a song called "Who Were We When We Were Who We Were?" I think that type of verbose nonsense speaks for itself.

The make-up work actually was quite phenomenal; visually, Oscar was truly a different person in each segment. Story-wise, Oscar was a different person in each segment, which makes the film extremely non-cohesive. At the end, the film pretends that they presented ideas about the future of society, the isolated nature of individuals, and the life of an actor, but there wasn't a single coherent idea in that film. It was all very meaningless.

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